In the 40 years prior to 1887, an average of almost two people drowned every year in and around the Murray River at Albury, so it is not surprising that the people of Albury agitated strongly for public baths.
In August 1887, a tender of £592 was accepted for Albury Municipal Baths to be built in the vicinity of the present Gertrude Colquhoun Park on Creek Street.
Albury Council published 13 by-laws for use of the baths, including: gentleman to bathe from 5am to 8am and 4pm to 8pm while ladies had use of the baths from 8.30am to 4pm; not open on Sundays; no person shall use the baths for more than one hour at a time; no smoking.
In 1893 Mr Graham Brougham and his sister Elizabeth were lessees, he supervising gentlemen's bathing and she in charge of the ladies.
The Border Post noted that "the water is frequently renewed" and "a 'bucking horse' is provided and the attempts by bathers to ride the 'horse' are most mirth provoking."
By 1912 Mr L V Harris was lessee and the rules re segregated bathing had been slightly relaxed with so-called "Continental Bathing" held regularly.
The Border Morning Mail reported that "a large number of ladies and gentlemen enjoyed the pleasures of a swim ... bathers and onlookers admitted for 6d each ... ladies' dressing rooms are provided on one side of the baths and gentlemen's on the other. Towels and trunks are obtainable at the baths, and a female and male attendant are in charge."
However it eventually become apparent that Albury had 'outgrown' the baths.
In the early 1920s, newspaper reports focused on overcrowding and poor sanitary conditions.
North Albury P&C Progress Association proposed a "more suitable" pool at Billson's Park to "serve a greater number of ratepayers."
A new pool costing over £3000, adjacent to Albury Sportsground and hailed as the "best swimming pool in the country," opened on October 26, 1929.
Harold Roxburgh was the first lessee and was still lessee in the mid-1960s.
The pool was described as "most hygenic" with "fresh water pumped from the Murray River at regular intervals".
Indeed, in 1938/39 the water was changed daily.
In February 1940 the pool was rebuilt to Olympic standard, tiled and chlorinated and re-opened by mayor Alderman Padman.
In 1992 this pool was demolished, replaced by the Albury Swimming Centre.